The Good Will Hunting star Matt Damon, who also happens to star in the upcoming superhero movie Thor: Love and Thunder, believes superheroes and streaming services are ruining cinema. Now, there’s no denying that the rise of streaming services fundamentally changed the entire entertainment industry and the way we watch movies. Still, according to Damon, the rise of superhero movies has affected studio choices and film selection.
Oscar-winning actor and filmmaker Matt Damon opened up about the challenges faced by modern cinema, specifically the prevalence of streaming services and superhero movies, as reported by Screen Rant. The actor stated that the combination of streaming services, such as Netflix and HBO Max, and superhero movies, like those produced by the Marvel Cinematic Universe or DC Extended Universe, are ruining the industry in some ways. And while many may argue that streaming services saved entertainment during the COVID-19 pandemic, Matt Damon might be right, at least in a sense.
The arrival of Iron Man in 2008, which signaled the beginning of MCU’s Phase One, and the emergence of Netflix, which was a DVD rental service at the time, signaled the changes that later overtook Hollywood cinema. 2008’s Iron Man was the first movie in the superhero genre that dominated the box office, paving the way to future big-budgeted movies that appealed to worldwide audiences. And Netflix’s expansion into a subscription-based streaming service only hastened the rise of Marvel movies. These changes leaned movie studios towards international releases, often facilitated by streaming services and films of the superhero genre, which appealed to a broader worldwide audience – creating a formula for easy success and big money. Matt Damon, and a handful of other industry names, have recognized this as something that’s not entirely beneficial to the cinema.
Matt Damon summed up the superhero phenomenon as the most profitable movie that travels around the world and has the least amount of cultural confusion, making it easy for everyone. He said, “You know who the good person is, who the bad person is. They fight three times, and the good person wins twice.” And, admittedly, he has a point. However, the long-term effects of the Coronavirus pandemic could steer things even harder towards streaming if the box office fails to mount a sustained recovery in the foreseeable future.
With that said, Matt Damon will make his second appearance in the Marvel Universe next summer when Thor: Love and Thunder releases. Some would call him part of the very same problem he decries. Currently, his presence in the superhero genre falls to two Thor movies, that cameo in Deadpool, and he did audition for a DC superhero role twice in the past. Unfortunately, he didn’t make it as a DC superhero. He recently joked about going down in history as an actor who turned down the biggest payout ever after refusing to star in James Cameron’s Avatar. However, his 1997 film, Good Will Hunting, made him an international star and a consistent force among Hollywood’s top-rated actors.
Matt Damon’s point regarding superhero movies and streaming services is hardly a new one. However, times change, and in the end, filmmaking is a business that does what every business should – place focus on a business model that makes the most money.